Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

Leaders trade blows on City bonuses

David Cameron and Ed Miliband have traded accusations over City bonuses as the Labour leader called for banks to be forced to disclose how many executives earn more than £1 million.

The Prime Minister accused Mr Miliband of "hypocrisy" as they clashed in the wake of the row over Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive Stephen Hester's bonus and the bank's former boss, Fred Goodwin, being stripped of his knighthood.

In the Commons the Labour leader urged the Government to implement legislation, already on the statute book, requiring banks to disclose how many employees were paid more than £1 million.

He said Chancellor George Osborne had even advocated naming the bankers concerned before the Tories entered government.

But Mr Cameron rejected his call, saying the reforms author Sir David Walker had recommended it should be done at the same time as the rest of the European Union.

He also rejected Labour's call for ordinary workers to be allowed to sit on remuneration committees, insisting it was not "practical" and broke "an important principle of not having people on a remuneration committee who have their own pay determined".

Turning the tables on Mr Miliband, he said it was the last Labour administration that agreed an RBS bonus pool of £1.3 billion, giving million-pound bonuses to "literally hundreds of people".

"The issue for you is, why are you in favour now in opposition of things you never did in government?" Mr Cameron said.

"Some might call it opposition, some people might call it hypocrisy."

But Mr Miliband said the Prime Minister was giving "no leadership on top pay" and said the failure to give force to the legislation on bonuses was "another broken promise".


From Belfast Telegraph